Filmart: Imagine TV to Produce Chinese Sci-Fi Series 'Mindscaping'

Ron Howard Brian Grazer - H 2016
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Ron Howard Brian Grazer - H 2016

The sci-fi action series, the first in Chinese from Brian Grazer and Ron Howard's production banner, involves a crime syndicate using mind control to amass power.

Brian Grazer and Ron Howard's Imagine TV is developing a 24-episode sci-fi series to be produced in Chinese.

Titled Mindscaping, the show is being written by Oscar Yang (Medical Examiner Dr. Qin, The Ten Deadly Sins), with Grazer, Howard and Imagine Television Group chairman Francie Calfo (Genius, Empire) set to executive produce.

Mindscaping is described as an original sci-fi action series. When a friend is wrongly accused of a crime, Eric Lin Hao is unwittingly brought into the city's dark underbelly, run by a crime syndicate using mind control to amass its power.

"We are thrilled to be developing Imagine’s first Chinese language series. We look forward to collaborating with local Chinese writers to seamlessly blend storytelling styles that speak to both Eastern and Western audiences," Grazer and Howard said in a joint statement.

Endeavor China, the Hollywood power agency's China joint venture with internet giant Tencent and Sequoia Capital, is co-financing the project with Imagine Television Studios and will handle sales.

Imagine said in a statement that it is "focused on expanding into the international space through development and co-production of Chinese language projects with a global appeal."

The company has several key ties to China. China Media Capital (CMC), the state-supported Chinese entertainment conglomerate headed by tycoon Li Ruigang, purchased a minority stake in Imagine in 2017. The company also has a $100 million TV co-financing joint venture with Hong Kong's dominant free-to-air broadcaster TVB (CMC also owns a key stake in TVB).

Imagine Television's current U.S. slate includes Fox hit Empire, Netflix's Arrested Development, and NatGeo’s Mars and Breakthrough. The company is also working on Why Women Kill from Marc Cherry, Swagger from Kevin Durant and Reggie Rock Bythewood, Wu-Tang: An American Saga from RZA and Alex Tse and Filthy Rich with Tate Taylor.